A Home Away From Home For People With Disabilities

Mumbai:  For 24-year-old Dinesh Lokhande self-sustenance was just a dream till got the support of a charitable trust who strives to educate and offer vocational training to people with disabilities for free.

"I love painting and drawing in school, I someday want to own a shop and run it using my capabilities" said Dinesh, who lives with his family of five people in a humble locality of Mumbai.

Dinesh's parents, who work as daily wage laborers, couldn't afford the education and special care that he needed. That's when Sunil Satpute's Gharkul charitable trust, started back in 2007, stepped in to help him.

"These kids were living their lives within four walls and I decided to give those lots of love and lots of happiness," Mr Satpute said.

"Some parents didn't even know about special schools and others who knew couldn't afford the education," he added.

Having spent his childhood in Mumbai's slums and working with Baljeevan trust, an NGO that rescues street kids spurred Mr Satpute's decision to start Gharkul. Today the charitable foundation educates and offers vocational training to over 50 children with special needs.
But the going hasn't been easy. "We have almost no parental support, not even for the therapy session that we conduct and that's the biggest challenge for us," said Sharad Kale, the principal of the trust.

Aside from this, space crunch and fund problems are the obstacles that team Gharkul have been trying to overcome. The school is run on funds donated by individuals.
Story First Published: January 24, 2016 18:40 IST